Trump's acting attorney general: Judges should be Christian with a "biblical view of justice"


#142

It wasn’t that religious people in general were hostile to science, it was that the institutional church was hostile to unsupervised discovery.

The early church’s insistence on the absolute truth of classical scholarship did immense harm to the development of science; so did the prohibition of autopsy.


#143

I’d actually like to know! Don’t know much about halal, tbh. I think Khashoggi’s acid bath can’t have been halal, though.


#144

Yes, I agree with that. The reformation changed that, but once again, that doesn’t mean that there was a firm division between faith and science until the late 19th. That was my general point. There was no such thing as secularism as we think of it today, I’d argue.


#145

UPDATE: It’s okay, folks. Apparently Tяump never heard of Whitaker before he mysteriously showed up as acting AG.

“…analysts subjecting Whitaker’s appointment to a type of scrutiny known as “reading what the Constitution and the other laws say” have noted that his appointment appears to be illegal on several levels.”


#146

additionally, so much of the literary and cultural heritage of western civilization is derived from old and new testament sources to an extent that huge portions of our discourse would be inexplicable without some grounding in the the bible as literature. this also, obviously, applies as well to other cultures’ foundational religious texts. how difficult it is for westerners to understand the breadth of literature and films from south asia without some knowledge of hindu and buddhist writings or the literature and film of north africa and the middle east or indonesia without some knowledge of the quran.


#147

Keith_McClary

1d

US Mideast policy is based on a Bible story view of history and many self-styled secularists have been brainwashed into believing these tales.

Sorry. My response was to this post above, not the one you responded to.


#148

This, so much exactly this. But the combative nature of so many Christianity-informed atheists who seem to see themselves as somehow needing to “win” against Christianity leaves us with this whole superiority-complex thing over who is right.

And then we wonder why we keep fighting each other.


#149

That’s the biggest kicker; nobody can actually prove what they believe or disbelieve in, yet so many people from both sides act like total flaming assholes to everyone within shitting distance because they are just so damn certain that they alone are “correct.”

It’s maddening as fuck.

Meanwhile my feelings are this;

Believe or disbelieve in whatever you want, I dont really give a damn… that’s your personal prerogative. But the nanosecond anyone starts trying to make laws and policy that impact everyone based on their unproven belief system, we have a serious fucking problem, and hell will be raised until we air that shit out.


#150

Wasn’t Christopher Hitchens pro-Iraqi invasion? Isn’t a belief in western superiority and empire been just as violent and destructive as a belief in Jesus or Mohammad?

My entire point in this thread hasn’t been that religion hasn’t been or can’t be oppressive - it objectively can be. But it can also be liberatory and in the service of freedom. That can be objectively shown as well (historically speaking). That really is all I’m trying to say.


#151

In fairness, I don’t think any of you (overgeneralized) know what the others are thinking; you’ve got beliefs in the supernatural (entities, locations, phenomena), standards of behaviour (whether justified via an appeal to authority or something reasonable or what have you), culture, myth, organizations both local and international, etc. all being labeled religion.

At the very least you don’t seem to be addressing what the other is saying.

My two cents…
Is a belief in the supernatural good? Probably not.
Is it particularly harmful? Also probably not; more than a few prominent atheists are able to hold onto really harmful beliefs without the need of an imaginary overseer to justify it.
Does Whitaker hold harmful beliefs? All sources say yes, and apparently he claims to justify them using texts that don’t justify them… How, I can only speculate, but it seems to be a common affectation or affliction.


#152

You can believe whatever you want to believe, just don’t shove it down my throat or try to make laws that force me to do what your beliefs demand I do or don’t do. Women have the right to choose what they want with their bodies. It’s their body, not mine. Everyone has the right of free speech, although it would be wise to consider the consequences. Using my tax dollars to bomb other countries and kill innocent people is not right. Using my tax dollars to fly around to play golf is not right. Accepting money from foreign governments as a “favor” to enhance my company’s profitability is not right. Pulling out of treaties and promises to other countries, or groups of people is not right. Rolling back the things in our laws that hold companies accountable for climate change is not right. Flaunting laws and discarding civilities and customs between nations is not right.
Whittaker is just the latest example of a failed presidency.
Cadet Bonespurs and his administration MUST be brought to justice.


#153

I think this sums it up nicely…


#154

Agreed. My father is a minister and I grew up in the church, so I have had a front row seat to both the good and bad of organized religion. BTW - once again, the post your are quoting - “many self-styled secularists have been brainwashed into believing these tales” - is not mine. It is from the first post in this thread from Keith_McClary to whom I was responding. I’m new here, so sorry if I am the cause for confusion.


#155

Ah, got ya. Thanks!


#156

This almost meta!
A historically unfit and unqualified POTUS, in office thanks to the technicality that the world’s greatest democracy ever does not allow direct election of POTUS illegally appoints an unfit and unqualified acting AG.
Can’t wait to see our leadership class rise up and oppose it. (JK; not going to happen.)


#157

I’m going to take from this that the contemporary war of church and science that I’ve experienced didn’t exist until the late 19th century. But I think the character of christian belief (which I can’t even come close to defining) that shows itself in christian atheism, predates that (and science) by a long shot. (And this probably somewhat contradicts what I wrote above) At some point I started reading philosophy like it was diaries - written for the author (partly based on the observation that privileged men tend to write about nothing but themselves). Anselm was trying to convince someone that god really, really existed in the 9th century. I’m pretty sure that someone was himself. And I’m pretty sure by doing so he was subjugating god to reason when that seems objectively nonsensical to me (if you actually believe in the Christian God). I think I’m just talking around the edges of this because I’m interested in the “shape” of my own atheism and you find out the shape of something by finding it’s boundary.

Definitely. I thought the point that new atheists tried to make about morality was that people who are religious and people who are non-religious do good and bad things. If someone is going to do something they know they shouldn’t, it doesn’t matter the system that tells them they shouldn’t. If someone is going to rationalize why it’s really okay to do something when they know it isn’t, it really doesn’t matter how they rationalize it.

Then I felt like they negated that point by making religion out to be a specific boogeyman. But just like Anselm, I realize when I read Hitchens and Dawkins, I should have read it knowing that they were writing for themselves, not for me. They come from a generation where giving up on God was probably very painful, or where being the sort of person who simply didn’t have the inclination to believe in God was very alienating. I bet most millenial atheists would say, “Well, of course there’s no God. What’s there to talk about?”


#158

Oh yes, but even then, I’d say that still starts in the early modern period with colonization and the eventually emergence of European empires - they started heading west out of frustration with the power of the Ottoman empire and its new control over trade routes to the east, and ended with a period of global domination. It came to be justified via the civilizing mission, which became increasingly secular, but started out in part about converting people to Christanity. I’d say prior to that, it was mostly aimed inward, towards each other during the reformation (which is nothing if not about the rise of state power in tension with papal authority).

That’s an interesting take on it. I’d say that the rise of new atheism is probably at the end of the process of disentangling religion from science. And isn’t it weird that their embrace of atheism isn’t enough for just them, they have to evangelize it, too? Because, even if they are writing for themselves, they are also writing for an audience, but that’s going to be primarily read by people who likely already agree with them. I suppose Anselm would have been writing for other literate monks, yeah? I think our concept of audience is probably different between the 9th century and today.


#159

Well, I guess that’s my observation of reading many philosophy-ish writers. Privileged people who get to sit in high towers and write whatever they want seem to shout the loudest about the things they are most desperate to convince themselves of. Maybe they* are just seeking validation.

* I probably should write “we” here, since clearly I’m doing the same thing.


#160

This is more a general comment, but I quite honestly never understood why seeking validation is often considered a negative trait? I mean, we’re human, and we seek out communal connections as a matter of course… of course, in the age of extreme individualism, I guess that’s considered a bad thing. As you note, by engaging and interacting here, are we not seeking out our tribe and to try and feel more human and connected? I will say that some of the leaders of the New Atheist movement do their thing in a entirely divisive way that seeks to further privilege what are already largely a privileged group. It bothers me no end when the means of seeking validation and acceptance is through condemning others in a broad and generalized kind of way.


#161

“There is no such thing as society” and all that.